Setting up protected areas in East Africa: In Africa, a protected area is a geographically defined area that is designated or regulated and managed to achieve specific conservation objectives. It may be set aside for the protection of biological diversity, and of natural and associated cultural resources and is managed through legal or other effective means.
Protected areas in East Africa include national parks and natural wildlife reserves, sustainable use reserves, wilderness areas, and heritage sites, protected areas in East Africa have been widely used as a conservation tool in order to maintain a representative sample of unaltered species and eco-systems for the future and to limit the potential for environmental degradation through human mismanagement of resources.
In East Africa I will give an example of Uganda, Uganda Wildlife Authority has a key role in promoting the establishment of protected areas throughout Uganda; they have developed standards and guidelines for the management of all the protected areas.
Setting up protected areas in East Africa have been established following the categories defined by respective countries, protected areas are managed mainly for the sustainable use of natural ecosystems.
Setting up protected areas is the best way to preserve biodiversity and conserve it through protected areas by reducing human activities or completely excluding humans.
In East African population growth and poverty are seen as the main causes of environmental degradation; people are regarded as a problem from which the environment needed protection.
Protected areas in East Africa, national parks, and wildlife reserves limit the local people, traditional practices are prohibited, and people are held under penalties of fines or imprisonments for utilizing park resources. However, in East Africa, there are very controversial scientific and social problems with this approach, which was characterized by serious conflicts between local communities living around the protected areas and the state.
The following will lead to a transformation in thinking and the recognition for the local communities living around the protected areas in East Africa
- Local communities understand their environment and have extensive knowledge of the natural resources within their local surrounding environment
- Kisoro tours Uganda think that the exclusion of local communities from protected areas may actually lead to the impoverishment of their biological diversity, with both ecological and social costs
- Local practices enable local communities to live with nature in a mutually beneficial way. For example in Uganda banning hunting altogether, a series of regulations could be put in place to regulate hunting, i.e, prohibitions on killing juveniles, or pregnant females.
- Different local communities living around protected areas still do not see wildlife and the environment as their own property because they are not involved in decision-making and have little responsibility in conservation projects among many activities done in the protected areas.
- Also, the revenues collected from those protected areas have not always been shared with communities around the protected areas, Kisoro tours Uganda think that the management has taken to on a more holistic approach to assessing biodiversity and environmental protection which has to be effective in linking conservation with local communities and also linking with human needs.
The advantages of setting up protected areas in East Africa
- It protects the flora and fauna live in natural habitats without human interference.
- It also increases the life cycles of the organisms and their evolution progresses in their natural habitat.
- Setting up protected areas means that conservation will provides the required green cover and its associated benefits to our surrounding environment.
- Setting protected areas in Africa it is less expensive making it easy for management.
- Setting up protected areas also promotes the interests of the indigenous local communities are also protected.
- A protected area in East Africa is one of the main sources of foreign exchange.
- Protected areas are very good for the research and study purposes for continuity